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Trafficking in West Africa

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue
The Truth Network Radio
February 10, 2024 12:00 pm

Trafficking in West Africa

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue

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February 10, 2024 12:00 pm

Tc joins Robby to discuss the hardships that those vulnerable in West Africa face. Hear about the rescues that occurred this month and join with our team to stand in the gap. "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter." - Martin Luther King Jr. 

 A warning: this program contains sensitive content. Listener discretion is advised.

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If you or someone you know has experienced exploitation call the National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH) at 1-888-373-7888.

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The following program contains sensitive content, listener discretion is advised. Welcome to Lantern Rescue, a ministry program dedicated to bringing light into the darkness of human trafficking. It's time to light the way to freedom. This is Lantern Rescue. We tell the stories, we talk about rescues, and we empower you to do something about it.

William Wilberforce once said, Let it not be said I was silent when they needed me. This is Lantern Rescue. What I am personally thrilled about this episode of Lantern Rescue is I get a chance to talk to TC every now and then, but actually do a show just me and TC.

I've never had that chance. But even cooler than that, from my perspective, is what he wants to talk about. Today is being February.

It's Black History Month. And a lot of folks don't realize the connection of that and Lantern Rescue. They're very, very connected, aren't they, TC? They are. Absolutely, they are. Yes. And so, yeah, go ahead. No, I just think it's, um, I think it's interesting. You know, I was going to bring a verse, Robbie.

2 Chronicles 16, 9 says, For the eyes of the Lord, run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. And I, you know, as we were talking pre-show, I think about over the years. Um, of course, since the garden, there has been problems, right? Um, and so one of the big problems is, is that men, stronger men take advantage of weaker men. And, you know, in the general sense, and as far as Lantern's concerns, we are, you know, we are dedicated to fighting human trafficking. When, when Martin Luther King Jr. was fighting things, he was fighting the oppression of his people, of the black people in America. And, you know, the ties of that to, you know, the Civil War and even for America, clearly ongoing struggles to, you know, to protect all people. And so I just, you know, they, they are tied in my mind and I have a couple of quotes, um, when you're ready that I think kind of tie his work and his life's work to what Lantern is trying to accomplish now. Oh, absolutely.

Go ahead. So the first one is darkness cannot drive out darkness. Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate.

Only love can do that. And of course, we know the context of his words, but those words are much bigger than, than any one struggle Lantern's or anybody else's. And it is true, biblically true and true in practice that, you know, that light, you know, in our case, God's light God's people are the only ones who are going to bring change. And so for Lantern, you know, I mean, no pun intended really, but the idea that Wren came up with for a Lantern and what that means in the darkness is like, it's very poignant and it's very real.

And we take that very seriously. And the other, you know, the other quote that I have from is that I think probably drives the people at Lantern, at least this, this idea is that our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. And, um, you know, so I think, you know, Martin Luther King Jr. lived from 1929 to 1968 or kind of the guy that Lantern used for their rallying cry was William Wilberforce who lived from 1759 to 1833. So I know numbers sometimes drive people up, but, you know, he said, let it never be said that I was silent when they needed me.

And Martin Luther King says, Hey, you know, the day that we stop, you know, that we become silent about things that matters the day we start to die. So here's two guys that are generations apart, but, and, and really in no way connected, you know, and the kind of people that they were, um, like they're saying the same things years apart and having a massive effect on the countries in which they lived. And I think that's very significant. Yeah. And it's, it's, it's interesting to me that one of the big things that Lantern has done is, is just, I hear people all the time tell me about land and rescue that, you know, they had no understanding of the slavery that goes on every day, not only across the world as we talk about, but here in America.

And my guess is that back in those days, a lot of folks didn't realize the oppression that Martin Luther King Jr. was living through, nor certainly Wilberforce saw of what was happening to the slave trade. Absolutely true. And, and the more, you know, so, so there are, there are people on the earth that understand very well what trafficking and slavery means because it matters to them because they're making money, right? Like it's, they understand it very well.

They're very good at it. There are other people on the earth who have no idea, not because they don't want to have an idea, but the way that, you know, the way that they live or where they live or whatever, they're, they're unaware. And there are other people who might have an idea, but it's, it's kind of messy.

And what would I do? And I can't. And so, you know, Lantern, though we're not an educational organization, you know, solely, we do care about that. And people can know. And when people do know, you know, I believe before God that, you know, at that point when you have knowledge that it is time to be light in the darkness and Lantern Lantern actually facilitates that across so many different spectrums, you know, like, Bobby, when we talk to donors, or when donors come alongside or somebody who might want to be a donor, you know, we, we can talk to them about the realities and we can enable them to affect change. When we do that, and money or prayer support or equipment or other things come in connections relationships.

And that is a direct that has a direct effect upon people who need the help. And so, you know, in a very real sense, Lantern is creating a pathway for people who have strength and means to help those who have neither. Oh, it not only makes sense to see, but also I would say that the listeners to the podcast listeners to the broadcast, you know, every time they share it, they're sharing light, you know, every time they pray that, you know, they're bringing light.

You know, we're all kind of in this, and it's amazing, you know, how, you know, part of what you guys do is you just relay the information of what you're aware of that's going on that I honestly would have no idea of so many things that I learn every week as I get a chance to record with you guys, but it's absolutely amazing. And it's very biblical, right? Absolutely. 100%. I personally have been driven over the years by Isaiah 117 that talks about, you know, correcting oppression and evil and doing good to those again who cannot do it for themselves.

I mean, to me, that's, I mean, that's been at least since 2008, my personal life's call, and maybe even I've been in law enforcement for years and years, maybe it's just been in my DNA since a very, very young age. So absolutely true. Yes. And even history.

Go ahead. I was just gonna say, I think another, you know, there are many different kinds of counter human trafficking and anti human trafficking organizations out there, right? Many. Some are into restoring people who have been, have been hurt in one way or another, exploited. And there's, it's so essential. And sometimes I think it's the hardest, the hardest part of the equation to, to redeem and to restore folks, you know, and there are other organizations who are, you know, the information is their thing. They feel like if they can raise awareness, um, that that will enable people if they want to, to get busy and there's truth to that. And we do some of that, but I, I thoroughly believe in clearly and committed to the fact that lantern not only does that and facilitates the other, but lantern, like, you know, metaphorically rolls up their sleeves and probably actually rolls up their sleeves and enters into the fight to push back the darkness and to enable the restoration of those who have been hurt. And to enable the restoration of those who have been exploited. So I think it's very, very significant.

I think lanterns place on this particular map or scope or field is very significant. Right. Is the, is the slavery is clearly, like you said, biblical as it could be clear back to Joseph slavery, right? Correct. Yeah. So think about that Robbie from, from some of the earliest chapters in Genesis until we're sitting here today talking on a, on a, you know, uh, you know, the broadcast, um, like, so, you know, it's clear until Jesus returns this fight's on, but it's also clear that God cares and is enabling people to fight the fight. Yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely beautiful that, um, you know, I've thought of several times when we, we had a chance to actually hear from victims and, and how they thought that, you know, nobody was hearing their, their cries, but God hears them. And it's, it's fascinating to me how he has raised up people, but the organization of lantern is what kind of just really surprises me and continues to, to, to encourage me that you guys are training people who are training people that are training people at this point in time.

Right? Yes, sir. Absolutely true. And I, I mean, I guess I'm, maybe I'm a Homer, but I, I know that all the folks in lantern who, or whether they're enabling, you know, things on the administrative side, or they're actually out there in the country, walk in the, walk in the bush, so to speak, which is absolutely true.

I can give you the name of the guy who's literally banging around Africa, enabling police to make arrests and rescue kids and, and do sophisticated investigations to fight this thing back at absolutely the boots on the ground level. Um, I am, uh, lanterns got some very, very special people fighting the fight. So, you know, it's very, it's exciting to see. And I'm, I'm, you know, I'm proud to be a part of it, to be honest, but that's not too vain.

No, no, no. I mean, it's, it's kind of neat. God has a place for all of us, uh, in, in this fight as you become aware of it now, like you, like the world war four's quote, um, you know, obviously it's our opportunity to make a difference. And even the idea of black history month, right? It's a time for us to reflect on how the courage of these people, um, you know, especially Martin Luther King Jr. that stood up in the midst of that. And those letters that he wrote from that jail sale in Atlanta, like they were to the church.

I mean, those that's, that's who he was writing to the, to the churches at the time, because it's the church that, that makes the big impact. Correct. Absolutely. And you know, I can think of an example, a very specific example, um, that we can talk about on the second half. It would be, it would be exactly to your point in this. If you, if now's a good time to take a break.

I think I can bring some very specific examples of exactly that. All right. Well, I'm looking forward to that.

I'm sure you are. We want to go to a break, but I just want to remind you that if you go to there, you can see how to pray, how to get involved, you know, how to, how to do what God puts on your heart. And so we thank you so much for listening.

It's listeners that make all the difference. And we're going to be right back with a whole lot more on TC's connection between black history month and lantern rescue. Lantern rescue is a USA based organization that conducts international rescue operations for people suffering from human trafficking. Lantern specializes in sending former US special operation, law enforcement and intelligence personnel to partner with host nations and assist them in creating specialized units to combat ongoing security problems, such as genocide, terrorism, and human trafficking.

As a nonprofit charity, they offer services free of charge to their host nations. Human trafficking is grown into the second largest criminal activity in the world, reaching an estimated $150 billion in annual activity. Lantern rescue has developed rapidly to combat trafficking. Lantern operates through a trained international network in order to rescue women and children from sex and labor slavery and facilitates holistic aftercare services. They're gearing up for operations right now, and you can go to to see how you can support them financially. Welcome back to this wonderful edition of lantern rescue. I've got TC with me. We're talking about lanterns connection with black history month. And actually, we got some stories now coming your way.

And so TC take it away. Well, we were talking about I mean, in the first half about the church being the key to this and and again, Atlanta, we absolutely believe in that. And so sometimes it's easy to say you believe in something, it's much easier to know that you believe in something when you actually do something about it. So here's an example of in one country, our team is going down to actually be a part of some, some actually, again, some actual law enforcement, more sophisticated rescues, and arrests and things that could be, you know, internationally related in the region, those sorts of things. But during the trip there, the team was not, you know, sitting back and waiting, they actually went to see other other people in that country who are like, again, they really have, they have no recourse to advance themselves. They don't have the power, the resources or the connections to better their lot, and their lives pretty, pretty dire.

I've seen those, these particular subsets, myself, I've been there twice. And so in this particular instance, the team went there with a couple of in country assets or friends of ours, went to visit and saw all of the things that need to be done, it could be, it could be, you know, some serious upgrades to their sanitation, it could be a playground for kids, it could be educational material for the kids so that in the end, the very basic needs could be met, you know, like sanitation, and good food, those things are absolutely central, real, you know, clean water, right. And then the other things like church and educational materials so that the people can somehow, you know, not be, they can break the cycle, as we say, they can break that cycle of poverty or, you know, uneducated, you know, being uneducated through the fall of their own. And so our team member looked at all this, realized it was beyond Lantern's scope and capacity and immediately connected with somebody in his church, and his particular church, I, you know, I'm not going to say it now, maybe that's, you know, for another day, but their church, this church is very serious about stepping in and filling needs of this kind, like they are, like they're on it, it's almost like they're personal, like they're really good at it.

Some of the people in their administration are good at planning, organizing, bringing other churches in. So again, you talked about the ripple effect, you know, of when you get something started. Well, our teammate brings in another guy who sees this, and the plans that they have to change this particular piece of culture in this country is phenomenal. It's like, it's just incredible.

And I'm sure at some point in the future, we can talk about this in some detail. But again, there's the church in action, people who now know something have the ability and the desire, God given desire to make a change for somebody that they've never even met. And I just think that is awesome. Oh, it is.

And, you know, the people groups that they are helping are really the least of these in that culture that you're talking about. And they really are. That's well said.

That's exactly right. And so it's really cool, because I'm pretty familiar with some of the churches that have that have jumped into that. And it really is cool to see people immediately go, Oh, my goodness, look what has happened here. These people got caught between two countries. And now here they are.

And just in a horrible way, we're not accepted by anybody in their culture. But you're exactly right. I mean, thanks to what the church is doing. They're bringing light, which is what lanterns about. Absolutely.

And I'd like to I, I always, you know, again, this, the fight against human trafficking, you know, now that it's commercialized, now that big organization, cartels and are the you know, the corruption is rampant and the money is so big. Sometimes it's like what, what difference does it make a little lantern with a dozen people, yada, yada, yada. But think think about this.

Number one, I can't that kind of rhetoric drives me insane. But think about one person, like one teammate of ours. Call and another one person made a call and guts. And now you have like, it's so much, it's so much bigger, like one person made a huge difference. And so I, you know, I encourage our listeners, I encourage our lantern, folks at like, like, be faithful. God has you on this planet at this time for a reason. And if you are hearing this, and you are stirred by this, then God's got something for you to do. And it matters a great deal.

Yeah, it really, really does. And, you know, part of your connection to Black History Month is actually in Africa, right? Correct. And so, so we've talked about, you know, my buddy Manny there many times on this podcast, and I have him and another, another girl that I'll call Sarah, right? So there's two people in their country. And again, they're just two people, right? And Emmanuel stories, pretty sad, but because of events that happened to his family, he was going to do something. And he was arrested for trying to do the right thing several times until, again, he was so hard headed that they're like, okay, fine. Go ahead and do it.

This is what we want. And so he's been faithfully doing that for at a minimum of four years, right? He's certainly not doing it to make a lot of money because he's not right. And so, you know, I just got his report for the month. And again, I can't, I can't put these numbers out because I haven't gone over them all. And I understand that.

But let's just say that conservatively, he's affected the lives of 30 people at a border and their families. So that's one guy for one month who is relentless in doing his part. And then my other buddy, Sarah, you know, she can facilitate meetings. She went when I go there, I don't speak French, not very good at the language piece. But, you know, she takes care of details. And she has gone to a foreign country to get clothing and shoes for kids.

She has shopped in markets to get the best prices for food and and all kinds of things after they're rescued. And she monitors that like, so again, because relationships and people who are relentlessly doing things that that God calls good impact is is seriously, you know, it's special. Well, yeah, if you just do the math, if he affected 30 people in a month, and that means at the end of the year, he might have affected like 365 and in 10 years, that's 3600 people. That's not to mention the people that he gets involved that get arrested, that that's thousands that would never be, you know, have to go through the same thing, right? Absolutely right. Like I, again, I don't think you know, we can like your math, right?

There's is the perf is the initial, the initial, the rock hit the pond kind of thing. But I know that his work there has caused people to either not either he's creating this, like he's, he's the rock in the river that nobody seems to be able to move. They always have to move around him. He's steadfast. I know people in the community now take take problems to him, even if he doesn't know about it himself.

I know that they're starting an online presence like their ministry has grown in sophistication and scope. And there's no end in sight. He has at least, you know, 12 or 14 other people doing the work. It's just, you know, he's steady. He is he is relentless in the best of possible ways. And so, yeah, that's, that's pretty typical. You know, he's, he's, I don't know, it's there.

There are other people across that continent that are putting themselves in harm's way that are like, they're making international connections between, I mean, Ecuador and Uganda. And like, it's, it's phenomenal, Robbie, to see the people work and the impact that it has. And it's like, you know, I love that quote that you talked about at the beginning of Martin Luther King Jr. that, you know, you just can't beat love.

And what I've heard from about the man now for a number of years, is man. There is nothing that's going to stop love in his book, right? Nothing. It's unstoppable. It is unstoppable. It's, you know, it's, it's special, you know, one of the one of the things that happens for organizations like ours who are doing this work is, you know, their their funds and teams traveling and things going and you sometimes you want to make sure you're trying to check up to make sure that the funds that you're sending are doing everything you're supposed to do.

That's, that's our job, right? With him, it's like, no, we're good. He's crushing it. There's really no doubt, you know, every month, every month, here comes, here comes the work, here comes, you know, special videos of things or numbers or, you know, like, just relentless. And it's amazing that, you know, he has such a personal involvement with it. You know, it reminds me of that second Corinthians chapter one, you know, God comforted us so that we could be a comfort to others that we are comfort with the comfort we are comforted with. And to him, he's trying to get people the comfort that really he never got. Yeah, yeah, for him and for his family, and he, he does, I feel like he actually probably feels it personally, like you said, I can, you know, we get to see his interviews, and sometimes interrogations, you know, in a, in a verbal sense, they're not any kind of, you know, nothing bad where he actually is talking to a perpetrator of trafficking and getting the truth from them, and he's invested, you know, and he gets to the bottom of it. And, you know, the like the police trust him implicitly, like if he sends a report, and that stuff goes to court, like it carries some serious weight. So he's a man of integrity, he knows what he's talking about, and he's consistent. So he definitely has had an impact. And look, there are many, many others.

It's easy to talk about him. It's easy to talk about Sarah, I could tell many stories, and there are many stories to come, that that should be told that they encourage to encourage the listeners. And, you know, we, we in turn, try to encourage folks overseas. Of course, we never, we never want it to be exploitative.

So we're careful with this sort of conversation. But I do, I do want people to know that what they do empowers us, and it matters. It absolutely matters for good.

Yeah, well, we got just a couple minutes left TC, what did you want to make sure you got in today? Well, so I always, at least I tried to always, like I just said, I want people to know that what they do matters prayers, you know, financial gear, relationships, all those things matter, right. And that I also want them to know, it's important to know, even for myself that yeah, it's a big battle, but it's one that we're called to. And each and every person matters, like you, what you do personally matters as well.

And I want people to know that our team is dedicated to it. There are, I mean, honestly, there are people with some skill sets and lantern that they could go somewhere else and, and, and, you know, make more money or be at a higher position or whatever. And they have, they have some, they have submitted themselves to this process for good. And I just think, you know, there, there has been a struggle between light and darkness since the fall. God has called us to it. Lanterns in that Martin Luther King Jr. is a part of that.

William Wilberforce was a part of that. And you and I are part of it. And we are here for a reason. And right now, this is it.

This is it. Well, that is awesome. TC is always, you know, an honor to be part of what God is doing. And so everybody listening, right, has their role, even if, you know, just right this second while you're thinking about it, you can pray for them.

Pray for Manny. And again, go to to see, you know, where you might even fit in some more. Again, God bless you so much, TC, for all that you guys are doing and have a great week. Thank you, Rob. We appreciate it. Same here. God bless.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-10 14:32:16 / 2024-02-10 14:43:07 / 11

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